As if it isn’t hard enough to make it as a female in this male-dominated tech industry, Samsung has gone and perpetuated the stereotype of a computer-illiterate housewife in its latest commercial for the Samsung 840 EVO Solid-State Drive. Advertisements for computer accessories are generally never sexy, but making your female clientele sound like a complete idiot probably isn’t going to make things better.
In the commercial, which Samsung released and quickly pulled after an outcry, three different “clients”/bad actors talk about how they use computers in their daily lives. “I do homework, I play games … I also share files with friends,” an Asian male says, complete with glasses and a giant computer screen ready to play some sort of RPG. “I mainly share files for work,” says some other corporate-looking white dude, dressed in a slick button-up and tie. “I look at pictures and videos of my kids,” says the lone female, wearing pink in her perfect country-style kitchen. “I use the Internet … that’s about it!”
As if the lame acting isn’t offensive enough, Samsung goes on to hand these three figures the new EVO SSD to illustrate how easy it is to install and enhance their computer’s processing powers. The nerdy Asian is excited. Corporate white guy is all business-y and pretends he’s heard of this magical SSD device. “Whaaat?” the girl dumbly replies, as if the video crew just gave her an invitation to a party in their pants. Oh, just kidding, she just doesn’t know what to do with this computer thingy.
After the commercial proceeds to explain how simple it is to install the SSD (comparing it to “playing with little toy bricks” for the girl), the males get right to work and enjoy their faster computers. The girl stays stuck at how proud she is that she’s able to use a screwdriver.
Although the ad was originally posted some time earlier this summer, it caught public eye again after a Reddit user posted it in the video subreddit. One user claiming to be the actor who portrayed the business man said that they were told to speak slowly, as the commercial will be dubbed over in Korean. “They ask us to exaggerate since many Korean people feel thats how we ‘naturally’ act,” he wrote. “[It's] a promotional video, not a TV commercial, meaning it will be shown at conventions and expos and in-house.” Great, so it’s made for the people responsible for putting these things on the market!
I digress. My Asian, woman brains can’t comprehend the level of absurdity. Am I supposed to be excited about this SSD or clueless? Samsung has removed the ad from the Web, but thankfully, UK-based computer retailer Dabs.com has uploaded its copy.